Dormitory for students nears completion in Tikur Anbesa hospital, 22,000 will be accomodated if pro-ject is completed

The expansion project under the country’s largest referral hospital runs aground due to the lack of preparation on land occupancy.

The management of Tikur Anbessa Hospital has been planning to expand the Hospital with billions of Birr investment on Tesema Abba Kemaw Street, adjacent to the Tekelehaymanot Church, with a budget secured from the federal government.

Emperor Hailesellasie inaugurated the Hospital in 1973, built to accommodate 1,000 beds and employ over 3,400 staff, caring for an average of 20,000 patients a year.

Even though the impromptu attempt to expand failed, the project was initiated nine years ago by Yifru Birhanu(Prof.), the former vice president at Addis Abeba University. It was projected to be completed in seven years. The Hospital received 13hct of land from the Addis Abeba City Administration nine years ago.

However, the Mayor’s Office reclaimed the plot due to Tikur Anbesa’s management failure to launch the project in time.

3D computer rendering of 13 Ha Tikur Anbesa expansion project should like like this,

“It could not have been initiated in time as residents that didn’t receive compensation were occupying the space,” said Andualem Deneke (MD), chief executive director of Tikur Anbesa Health Science College. “It took a long time to get the title deed.”

A committee of experts from the Hospital studied the required preparations and how to resume the project, hoping to turn the place into a medical hub for patients from other African countries. Obon Voyage was hired to undertake the design work for a planned academic centre and the dormitory building.

Launched in 2017, the 12-storey student dormitory that can accommodate nearly 22,000 students is under construction. YOTEK Construction Plc has completed 70pc of the work.

The Tikur Anbesa Hospital expansion was projected to be completed in 2030, comprising treatment centres such as nuclear medicine, research and laboratory, with housing areas for medical professionals and students. The academic centre, part of the expansion with an estimated cost of 4.4 billion Br was set to be built in the area financed from the Addis Abeba University (AAU) budget. Occupying a 4,000Sqm of land, the 13-storey centre is expected to include student classrooms, meeting halls and a research centre.

Tilahun Abebe, a grade one contractor, was hired to undertake the centre’s construction six months ago. However, the Addis Ababa Land Management Bureau revoked the University’s right of ownership, reclaiming the plot to the land bank in 2018 for passing the five-year deadline. According to Andualem, the Hospital received a letter from the City Cabinet in 2013, assuring it had acquired the land. However, the Land Management Bureau repealed the letter.

The Contractor addressed its complaint to the University, filing claims.

Established in 1998, Tilahun Abebe General Contractor has undertaken over 10 projects, including hospitals in Adama and Bale Goba, in the Oromia Regional State. The significant shareholder and General Manager, Tilahun Abebe said the project would start in three weeks to be completed in four years.

Tilahun said the proposed academic centre will be built on the Tikur Anbesa Hospital premises; its progress will be discussed by representatives from the Ministry of Health, Addis Abeba Health Bureau, and the Ministry of Planning & Development.

The plot designated for the Hospital, except the unfinished dormitory block, has been undeveloped for the past nine years. Relocated residents of the Tekelehaymanot area were disappointed with how things unfolded.

Abdu Temam, 27, was a resident of the area. He lived in a house his parents rented from the Wereda with seven of his family members accommodated. Although he was relocated to a condominium housing around Bole Bulbula more than a decade ago, he spends much of his time working as an informal car dealer in his old neighbourhood. Abdu was hopeful to see the area developed but disappointed that the planned medical centre turned into a “crime hideout” instead. He implied that the place had been left for dumping waste.

“Women are getting assaulted,” he told Fortune. “People are getting robbed at night.”

Two other federal offices have shown interest in the area. The Federal High Court was planning to construct offices. A megaproject with the plan to move 38 sectoral offices in one place is also to be built in the exact location.

“The government project is going to be built on the plot,” said Sisay Getachew, director of land preparation and possession at the Addis Abeba Land Management Bureau. “The Hospital might be getting another place.”

These are issues of clashing interests over plots that needed a political decision from the authorities, according to Abraham Hailemeskel, a lawyer who served in the Gulele District Land Management Office.

PUBLISHED ON Dec 04,2022 [ VOL 23 , NO 1179]

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